Ask any hairstylist if they are interested in making more money—while also giving clients the healthy hair of their dreams—and you’d have a resounding “yes.” But ask if they have an existing hair extension clientele and, unfortunately, you’d have more pros saying “no” than “yes,” according to educator and master extensionist Danielle Keasling.
Keasling, a former salon owner based in South Carolina, was a long-time hair extensionist well-before she ever served as the Executive Artistic Director for Great Lengths USA. Now, she travels the world revealing the incredible revenue opportunities that extension services offer for salons and stylists.
“So many hairdressers don’t realize they already have an existing hair extension clientele,” she says. “These services allow stylists to make more money in less time doing what they’re already doing, while enhancing and elevating those finishes.”
From hair cuts to hair color, bridal parties to blow outs, Keasling breaks down all the ways to maximize your appointments to incorporate hair extension services—giving your clients the hair of their dreams while giving yourself a nice raise.
THE HAIR CUT CLIENT
Often, clients hear “extensions” and think of lengthening or volumizing, but the reality is that extensions are an incredible tool to densify and strengthen a haircut.
“At my salon, 70% - 80% of our clients had a tape-in extension on each side of their face to strengthen the perimeter of their haircut,” Keasling says. “Not only is the middle of the ear forward where we beat up our hair the most with heat styling, but we naturally don’t have as much density there.”
Adding a tape-in extension on either side of face to bulk up the perimeter, especially in clients with an A-line bob or to right-size an area with breakage, makes all the difference. Keasling recommends having a handful of GL Tapes at your station of the most popular color tones of your clientele.
“This 10-minute add-on service can take a $50 hair cut to a $75 - $100 hair cut,” Keasling says. “Not only are you giving yourself a raise, you’re giving your client the hair cut they didn’t think they could ever pull off. Imagine if you did this with every client, or even three clients each week—it really adds up.”
GL Tapes are 100% virgin Remy hair with a medical-grade adhesive that lays flat to the head. Hair is double-drawn, meaning it’s the same thickness from root to tip, allowing for total customization.
Every so often, a long-time blonde will say she’s ready to break up her solid color with lowlights in an effort to minimize a high-maintenance finish or damage, but she’s nervous to take the plunge.
“How many colorists have had a client freak out about a little depth and then ask you to go back in and re-lighten to blonde? It happens all the time, and it’s not healthy for the integrity of the hair,” Keasling says. “Extensions are a great way to introduce depth and dimension to your monochromatic blondes—without the commitment. Rather than a $100 lowlight service, explain to the client that it be $300 to do it via extensions, but it allows for the client to opt out if she’s not happy—minus the color correction. The other benefit is that the extensions’ color won’t fade as quickly due to the unique colorization process Great Lengths uses.”
Create chemical-free dimension and depth for clients with any hair color using Great Lengths’ Pre-Bonded strand-by-strand extensions. Featuring a keratin bond that closely resembles the structure and behavior of human hair, application is seamless and lasts 4-6 months with appropriate care and maintenance.
THE PINTEREST-PERFECT CLIENT
When looking for hair inspiration, Pinterest can be a client’s best friend—and a colorist’s worst nightmare when it comes to what’s realistic.
“Inspiration photos are often filtered or heavily edited—often it’s beautiful, white-blonde tones on super long, healthy hair,” Keasling says. “Professional colorists know it’s likely a wig, but clients have high demands.”
A color service via a mix of both GL Pre-Bonded keratin strand-by-strands and GL Tapes can be the perfect solution for the client who’s chasing Pinterest perfection.
“Not only will Great Lengths extensions give them the healthy, shiny, bright-white blonde they’ve always wanted, but our hair is colored in a molecular ionic process that won’t oxidize the way traditional hair color does—meaning the crystal-clean blonde you give her will stay crystal clean throughout her entire wear of her extensions.”
Great Lengths hair extensions allow for complete customization of color—you can create peaks and valleys for a full bouquet of tones.
“This chemical-free color service avoids damage from lightener, and takes the time and guesswork out of processing and toner selection, with total longevity in the results,” Keasling says. “What you see is what you get—you’re putting in the exact color that she wants, often in less time than if you used bleach and toner.”
Great Lengths extensions come in a wide variety of shades with dimensional effects including rooted, bronde, fashion tones, naturals, ombre and melted finishes, as well as limited-edition trend releases.
Brides spend tremendous time curating inspirational photos for everything from her dress to her cake, and, of course, her hair.
“Look at most brides’ moodboards and you’re likely to find a host of intricate upstyles with thick braids and detailing,” Keasling says. “You can’t achieve those looks unless you have a lot of hair. To prepare for her most important, and most photographed, day of her life, it’s important she know her look is within reach, but she needs the right canvas or the results won’t be the same. After walking her through the plan, she almost always opts for extensions.”
Hair extensions not only bulk up the canvas, but they allow for the proper support and foundation to create a style that lasts the whole day and into the night.
“A combination of GL Tapes and Pre-Bonded strand-by-strand extensions means she won’t have to worry about her look falling flat,” Keasling says. “And a bonus is that her hair will look incredible for her honeymoon, too!”
THE BRIDAL PARTY
Wedding revenue opportunities don’t stop at the bride—not only can the entire bridal party can benefit from an added touch of extensions for their day-of looks, adding in pops of extensions help secure their interest as future salon clients.
“I always bring with me an inventory of pre-braided strands that I can pop into the bridesmaids’ hair,” Keasling says. “You can add an additional 20% or more to the service charge after covering the cost of the hair.”
Makeup artists aren’t shy suggesting bridesmaids to upgrade their look to spend more on airbrush foundation or lashes—hair upgrades shouldn’t take a backseat.
A bonus? Everyone from the bridesmaid to the mother of the bride is a potential extension client.
“These one-on-one styling appointments are amazing conversation starters—it’s a mini consultation for extension services,” Keasling says. “The client simply brings the hair back into the salon and you can just charge for the tape-in application.”
THE CLIENT WITH THINNING
“I’ve had many clients cry in my chair worrying about their hair, whether it’s from age or post-pregnancy thinning—it can be traumatizing,” Keasling says. “If you look any before-and-after makeover photo, often it’s not the fashion or the makeup that makes the biggest difference in the transformation—it’s the hair. Especially when it comes to stopping the signs of aging, many women opt for enhancers, fillers and Botox—it surprises me when they don’t address their thinning hair through natural-looking extensions.”
If a client is experiencing thinning, she might not look to hair extensions as an immediate solution, especially if the top of her hair is sparse enough that she worries the bond site couldn’t be properly camouflaged.
“GL Tapes+ are tape-ins that are strategically designed to look as though the hair is growing out of the head,” Keasling says. “You can apply a Tapes+ really close to the part line and not worry that, if the wind blows, you’re going to see visible tape.”
With mindful selection of the right kind of extension, you can have a completely seamless application that is lightweight, not damaging and mimics natural hair growth.
“We’re living in a very stressful time, and stress can wreak havoc on the hair,” Keasling says. “Guests have a tendency to over-use hot irons when their hair is thin because they’re trying to manipulate the hair into a style they’re happy with. Great Lengths’ keratin bonds are designed to maintain the integrity of the client’s natural hair as it grows in because it preserves and protects the natural hair.”
GL Tapes+ can be reused up to three times and are perfect to be applied near the temples as well as the top of the head for a seamless, luxurious, fuller head of hair.
THE CURLY CLIENT
If you have a client with an unpredictable curl pattern, or the speed of her curls vary in different spots of the head, Great Lengths pre-permed hair extensions can be a great option resulting in consistent, balanced curls throughout the head.
“This service can help reinforce the curl, give it more structure and even out the speed,” Keasling says.
FAKE THE FRINGE
“Whenever I have a client that says ‘I want to cut bangs,’ I have to sometimes press pause and say, ‘No, you’re having a life crisis.’ Let’s try faking it first,’” Keasling laughs.
Great Lengths bonds are customizable enough that you can create a full fringe without pulling out the shears.
“These tiny bonds are a wonderful way for someone to experience a fringe before cutting her hair,” Keasling says.
If your client has curtain bangs, for example, they can strengthen the look and create more stability for the style to hold by adding supporting pieces.
“I like to take Great Lengths keratin bonds and add them right near the hair line to create more stability for that curtain fringe to hold a curl and be more defined,” Keasling says.
THE BLOW OUT CLIENT
“Clients who come in for weekly blowouts are perfect candidates for extensions, especially ones with fine hair,” Keasling says.
Extend the life of your client’s blowout by offering hair extensions that help hold the style, in addition to densifying the finish.
“Too much product is not a good thing, and with too little product her hair falls flat,” Keasling says. “Extensions can be used in customized areas that need more style support. No matter what product you use on me, for example, if I’m in the wind for 30 minutes my hair is flopping. Densifying and customized placement supports the style, helps the hair style set better, and gives your client’s style longevity.
THE MERMAID CLIENT
One of the biggest complaints about fashion shades is how quickly they fade. With Great Lengths extensions, you can provide a color service with vibrant tones that stay put.
“I love using extensions instead of hair color because we can avoid lightening the hair and pre-toning, so it saves time and saves the health of their hair,” Keasling says. “I built my entire salon off of providing clients with healthy options—and this service is a huge part of that.”
Each Great Lengths color option is made of multiple tones expertly blended into a single color. Professionals can even pre-blend several colors to create a completely custom shade.
For clients with gray or aging hair, a common challenge is manageability as the texture becomes coarser.
Consider offering her a zonal application of extensions in the newly released Salt and Pepper shade, available in a variety of lengths and application types, including Pre-Bonded, Tapes and Tapes+.
“By incorporating extensions into the hair, your client’s hair will be softer and more manageable because the texture of our hair is softer,” Keasling says. “She might not need a full head, either. Some clients just have sections of the head that are unruly, and this will add suppleness and smoothness in all the right spots.”
THE AIR DRY CLIENT
Keasling says living in the south she has many clients that will do whatever they can to avoid their blow dryers in the warmer months, so she always reaches for extensions.
“The humidity is intense and the air is thick—the last thing they want to do is spend time drying their hair for it to fall flat or puff up,” she says. “I have so many clients that get a global application of Great Lengths throughout their head to give them the ability to air dry with perfect, beach-y texture.”
Great Lengths hair extensions feature a natural wave, allowing clients to put away their curling irons and still have beautiful texture all year long. Pro tip: Ditch the blow out—but make sure she dries the bonds of the extensions to ensure longevity.
Learn more about the opportunities you can tap into to enhance and elevate your clients’ hair finishes, and for details on becoming a Great Lengths-certified artist, visit greatlengthsusa.com.
Even men are candidates for hair extensions, like this one shared by @lyndsaymaderis on @thairapypdx extensionist Garret.
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